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Taliban escalate abuses against single Afghan women, UN report

AT News

KABUL – In a recent report published by the United Nations on Monday, it has been disclosed that the Taliban are intensifying its control over single and unaccompanied Afghan women, imposing stringent restrictions on their access to work, travel, and healthcare.

The Vice and Virtue Ministry officials, in a troubling incident, advised an unmarried woman working at a healthcare facility to get married if she wished to retain her job. They deemed it inappropriate for an unmarried woman to be employed.

The Taliban’s measures extend beyond workplaces, as they have previously barred women from various aspects of public life and halted girls’ education beyond the sixth grade, contradicting their initial promises of a more moderate rule when they seized power in 2021.

Enforcing a stricter interpretation of Islamic norms, the Taliban has also shuttered beauty parlors and introduced a dress code, leading to the arrest of women not adhering to their version of hijab. In May 2022, a decree mandated women to only reveal their eyes and recommended the use of the head-to-toe burqa, echoing restrictions during their previous rule from 1996 to 2001.

According to the U.N.’s latest quarterly report, covering the period from October to December last year, the Taliban is specifically targeting single Afghan women or those without a male guardian. Although there are no official laws regarding male guardianship in Afghanistan, the Taliban insists that women cannot travel beyond a certain distance without a male relative by blood or marriage.

This revelation adds to the growing concerns about the Taliban’s oppressive measures, particularly towards Afghan women, raising international alarm and prompting calls for action to address the violation of basic human rights.

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